Stopgap Shortstop Solution

Apr 6, 2023
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Why is no one talking about Nick Sogard? He's a solid glue guy who's methodically worked his way through the system. The reports are he has a good feel for the game, strike zone judgment and of course, good bloodlines. He grades out as better than Hamilton defensively and has some gap power. Is he the long-term answer? Of course not. But he's a darn sight better option than Chang, Hernandez or Dalbec until Story and Mondesi return. End the circus at shortstop. Free Nick Sogard.
 

YTF

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Why is no one talking about Nick Sogard? He's a solid glue guy who's methodically worked his way through the system. The reports are he has a good feel for the game, strike zone judgment and of course, good bloodlines. He grades out as better than Hamilton defensively and has some gap power. Is he the long-term answer? Of course not. But he's a darn sight better option than Chang, Hernandez or Dalbec until Story and Mondesi return. End the circus at shortstop. Free Nick Sogard.
I think the short answer would be that he's not on the 40 man roster. Coupled with that is that he's played considerably more games at 2nd and 3rd in AA and AAA compared to SS.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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Sogard, Goodrum, Chang….not sure it really makes a difference although I imagine before too long, the team may want to try someone other than Yu. It’s annoying that the Sox always seem to get a Grebeck type performance out of these types of fill-ins…Jeter Downs, Yolmer Sanchez, Cesar Crespo, Ramon Vazquez.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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Is the Chang situation really that terrible? Can they not work out another month with him?
As long as he's playing solid defense and the rest of the lineup remains productive, they could probably survive the season with him in there. So yeah, another month or so with Chang as the primary SS is totally workable. Not ideal and not fancy, but workable.
 

RobertS975

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On April 20th, Jose Iglesias exercised his opt out clause in his minor league contract with the Marlins Jacksonville team making him a FA. Might we see him on the Red Sox soon?
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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Seems to me that the best solution is to play Duran in CF and Kike at SS, at least against righties. As long as he’s hitting, Duran should play. Having three LH OF probably isn’t ideal, but opportunities for Refsnyder to get a lot of PH at bats, and Chang to come in for defense as needed.
 
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koufax32

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Am I too skeptical for harping on the word stopgap here? Doesn’t that imply that either Hernandez or Story are the long term (this season) solution there? I just don’t see how that’s the case.

Edit: I completely forgot about Mondesi.
 
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E5 Yaz

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Am I too skeptical for harping on the word stopgap here? Doesn’t that imply that either Hernandez or Story are the long term (this season) solution there? I just don’t see how that’s the case.
IIRC, the thread began after Duvall went out and the presumption was that Keekay would go back to being the full-time CF, which created a "stop-gap" need for that time period.
Anyone who truly believes that Keekay or Story is the long-term answer at short isn't thinking clearly
 

chrisfont9

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Am I too skeptical for harping on the word stopgap here? Doesn’t that imply that either Hernandez or Story are the long term (this season) solution there? I just don’t see how that’s the case.
Yeah, they brought in a shortstop who they bought low on because of his knee recovery. That's your SS probably 4-5 days a week this year and fingers crossed full time next year. Chang is a proven backup, insofar as there is no reason to buy him in a larger role but that he'll be ready and has occasional pop. I suppose they could keep Kiké at short and play Mondesi less, but now you're junking the Mondesi acquisition because Duran has shown something? Seems less likely.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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Am I too skeptical for harping on the word stopgap here? Doesn’t that imply that either Hernandez or Story are the long term (this season) solution there? I just don’t see how that’s the case.
I think you are. If the plan was to have someone other than Kike or Story (or Mondesi) be the primary SS this season, they'd have addressed it during the winter. The only way they're going to address it further would be a deadline acquisition, which I don't think satisfies the thread's seeming objective. They're certainly not going to find a longer term solution in April when the only market is the scrap heap, hence the desire for a stopgap (which ain't coming anyway).
 

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Am I too skeptical for harping on the word stopgap here? Doesn’t that imply that either Hernandez or Story are the long term (this season) solution there? I just don’t see how that’s the case.
It will be Story or Mondesi. By most accounts, including doctors on this site, Story’s arm strength should be adequate or better when he returns. If Mondesi returns and looks good, they have options. If not, Story is the guy.

It doesn’t seem so hard to envision, to me.
 

Coachster

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Seems to me that the best solution is to play Duran in CF and Kike at SS, at least against righties. As long as he’s hitting, Duran should play. Having three LH OF probably isn’t ideal, but opportunities for Refsnyder to get a lot of PH at bats, and Chang to come in for defense as needed.
The problem with Kike at short against RHP till Mondesi's return is that Arroyo has been dreadful as well; not Chang levels of suck, but damned close. Almost seems a better choice to let Kike play 2nd, have Chang's solid defense at short, and hope Mondesi gets well soon.
 

Benj4ever

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No one wanted to sign him this winter so he had to take a minor league deal with the Marlins. Then he couldn't crack their roster. That's got to count for something too.
Fair point. I would just add that given Jose's track record, I'd take him over Chang.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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Fair point. I would just add that given Jose's track record, I'd take him over Chang.
I don’t disagree; but it seems likely that the roster spot Chang is holding down will only be his until Mondesi and or Story is ready. At that point, they will need to DFA Chang, maybe he ends up as a guy they can send down to Worcester. A long way of saying that I am not sure Iglesias would be happy with the role that he would be offered now and certainly not what it’s likely to be going forward.
 

E5 Yaz

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I don’t disagree; but it seems likely that the roster spot Chang is holding down will only be his until Mondesi and or Story is ready. At that point, they will need to DFA Chang, maybe he ends up as a guy they can send down to Worcester. A long way of saying that I am not sure Iglesias would be happy with the role that he would be offered now and certainly not what it’s likely to be going forward.
Exactly and also there's the 40-man spot Iglesias would require for what conceivably be a relatively short stay
 

Benj4ever

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Fair point.
I don’t disagree; but it seems likely that the roster spot Chang is holding down will only be his until Mondesi and or Story is ready. At that point, they will need to DFA Chang, maybe he ends up as a guy they can send down to Worcester. A long way of saying that I am not sure Iglesias would be happy with the role that he would be offered now and certainly not what it’s likely to be going forward.
Yeah, the front office clearly doesn't view him as a starter, so that's problematic.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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Exactly and also there's the 40-man spot Iglesias would require for what conceivably be a relatively short stay
Yes. It was one thing when he signed on for a three week stint at the end of 2021 knowing that's all it was going to be. I can't see him signing on for a similar (arguably lesser since he wouldn't be a regular starter) role in the middle of the season that would likely put him back in the exact same spot, unemployed, by early July.

That said, I don't expect Bloom is even shopping for a shortstop/utility infielder right now. He's content to muddle through another month with the current mix and bringing up Valdez or Dalbec if necessary, then mixing in Mondesi and Story when they're ready. That was the plan in February, no reason for it not to be as they head into May.
 

NDame616

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Was this thread cut from another?

I guess I'm wondering...stopgap to whom? Are we trying to bridge something till Story returns or Meyer makes the show?
 

chrisfont9

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The problem with Kike at short against RHP till Mondesi's return is that Arroyo has been dreadful as well; not Chang levels of suck, but damned close. Almost seems a better choice to let Kike play 2nd, have Chang's solid defense at short, and hope Mondesi gets well soon.
Arroyo is a league average hitter, but his constant injuries keep him from getting into a groove. He just needs some reps and he's better than Chang. Chang has never hit much in the ML.

Update: Chang apparently took this personally.
 

YTF

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Was this thread cut from another?

I guess I'm wondering...stopgap to whom? Are we trying to bridge something till Story returns or Meyer makes the show?
Duvall got hurt, some here expected Kike' might be seeing more time in CF which led to the thought that the Sox might be looking for another SS until the return of Mondesi/Story. Dalbec was promoted and we were told that he would be seeing time at MI and it got folks to wondering.
 
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shaggydog2000

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Jose hit .292 last year. That's got to count for something.
He's also the poster boy for empty batting average. He had a walk percentage below 4% and a .089 iso. So that average doesn't count for much. There is a reason he's freely available right now.
 

Yo La Tengo

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Side note- Mookie has played SS in three of the last four games for the Dodgers, including a start yesterday (and of course he looked great). The Lux injury really exposed a lack of depth for a pre-season favorite.

63894
 

donutogre

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Side note- Mookie has played SS in three of the last four games for the Dodgers, including a start yesterday (and of course he looked great). The Lux injury really exposed a lack of depth for a pre-season favorite.

View attachment 63894
That is absolutely wild. I know he was a 2B for a long time before switching to the outfield, and has played the infield occasionally albeit infrequently, but still. Dude is such a pure baseball player.

EDIT: I forget that he actually came up as a SS, but still. It's been a long time since he's played that position, and never at the MLB level. Really cool.
 

Apisith

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Story started throwing last week, will start hitting next week. What’s the timeline after that? I can’t imagine it will take him until July to be ready like the earliest reports projected. Hopefully third week of May if everything goes to plan?
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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Story started throwing last week, will start hitting next week. What’s the timeline after that? I can’t imagine it will take him until July to be ready like the earliest reports projected. Hopefully third week of May if everything goes to plan?
As he's on the 60-day IL, the earliest he can return is May 29 (60 days from Opening Day).
 

SouthernBoSox

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Story if going to have at least 2 weeks of minor league action.

I think you are looking at mid June as best case.
 

TomRicardo

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Am I too skeptical for harping on the word stopgap here? Doesn’t that imply that either Hernandez or Story are the long term (this season) solution there? I just don’t see how that’s the case.

Edit: I completely forgot about Mondesi.
I would guess you could say stop gap to a stop gap. This offseason I doubt the Sox are going to be looking Javier Baez, so giving someone like Tim Anderson 2 year contract would make sense. To Stop gap to the stop gap, a redundancy if you will.
 

moondog80

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I would guess you could say stop gap to a stop gap. This offseason I doubt the Sox are going to be looking Javier Baez, so giving someone like Tim Anderson 2 year contract would make sense. To Stop gap to the stop gap, a redundancy if you will.
Tim Anderson gets much more than 2 years.
 

Fishy1

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I'm not sure why Story wouldn't be the solution if his arm strength is really back. He was a great SS before his arm crumbled, and now his surgery should repair that.
 

chrisfont9

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I'm not sure why Story wouldn't be the solution if his arm strength is really back. He was a great SS before his arm crumbled, and now his surgery should repair that.
Hm, well Mondesi is who you'd expect at short, but he's played some 2b too. You could also wonder whether they need set positions, or if either of these guys is OK moving between the two. Then you can get into matchup switches, since Mondesi switch hits and is about the same from either side, versus everyone else being RHH. Anyway, if the players are inflexible, then Story goes to 2b I'd guess, but we will see.
 
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Rovin Romine

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I would guess you could say stop gap to a stop gap. This offseason I doubt the Sox are going to be looking Javier Baez, so giving someone like Tim Anderson 2 year contract would make sense. To Stop gap to the stop gap, a redundancy if you will.
Trevor Story is signed through 2027 with a club option. He will be either the starting SS or 2B for the next 5 years.

Signing a stopgap middle IF makes a lot of sense though, since the Sox have absolutely zero SS or 2B prospects on the way up.
 

YTF

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Hm, well Mondesi is who you'd expect at short, but he's played some 2b too. You could also wonder whether they need set positions, or if either of these guys is OK moving between the two. Then you can get into matchup switches, since Mondesi switch hits and is about the same from either side, versus everyone else being RHH. Anyway, if the players are inflexible, then Story goes to 2b I'd guess, but we will see.
If (BIG if) Mondesi is healthy I'd prefer to see him at SS and Story at 2B. Story embraced his positional change, played a GG quality second last season and the team was reluctant to move him. I think they keep him there if possible.
 

moondog80

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If Chang is out for a while, do they call up Valdez/Hamilton or swing a minor trade for some other version of Chang sitting on someone's AAA roster?
 

Yelling At Clouds

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Tim Anderson gets much more than 2 years.
Possibly, though he will be on the wrong side of 30 with zero healthy seasons to his name outside of the shortened COVID year.
Anderson has a cheap option for next year that probably gets picked up, but I do think he’s a potential in-season trade candidate, assuming his current injury isn’t a huge deal. The White Sox are not good at the moment, and their farm is pretty weak.
 

moondog80

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There's a "some other version of Chang" sitting on the Worcester roster already: Niko Goodrum.
I was under the impression the glove is lacking at SS, but I'm happy to be proven wrong. The guy does have a .524 OBP in Worcester -- 22 walks in 63 PA.